What is your favorite holiday? Perhaps it’s Christmas, Hanukkah or Halloween. Every culture has special days or festivals. Many of these festivals are religious. Christmas, for example, celebrates the birth of Christ, while the feast of Eid ul-Fitr marks the end of Ramadan, a month-long Muslim holiday. Religious holidays can help strengthen people’s religious faith.
Other holidays, such as birthdays, are just for fun. Some holidays celebrate the change of the seasons. Many cultures have holidays to celebrate the spring planting season or harvest. Many holidays started hundreds or even thousands of years ago. These holidays have changed over time.
- Chinese New Year comes in January. Dancers weave through the street, carrying a long paper dragon. Fireworks scare away any evil spirits.
- On November 2, children in Mexico celebrate the Day of the Dead, a day set aside to remember and honor those that have died.
- Halloween probably came from the ancient Celtic holiday, Samhain. The night before Samhain – October 31 — the Celts believed ghosts could roam the earth. They built bonfires to keep the ghosts away. Later, beggars in England marched in parades on All Saints Day, asking for food. Families gave them pastries – soul cakes. In return, the beggars prayed for the people.
- In Pakistan, kite flying is a traditional way to celebrate Basanth, the first day of spring on the Muslim calendar. Boys rub powdered glass over the strings of their kites. They use the strings to cut their competitors’ kites.
- During Holi, the Hindu spring festival, children squirt each other with squirt guns filled with red and yellow liquid. They also throw colored powder at each other.
- O-Bon is a Japanese summer holiday for remembering the dead. People float lit candles on lakes and rivers.
- Feast: huge celebratory dinner
- Harvest: when the crops are brought in from the fields
- Roam: wander
- Beggar: someone who begs for food
Visit Scholastic to read more about holidays around the world.
Question: Do different countries share any holidays?
Answer: Yes, most Western countries celebrate Christmas, although their traditions may differ slightly. Some religious holidays, such as Hanukkah, look the same, no matter where in the world you live.
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Declan, Tobin. " Fun Holidays Facts for Kids ." Easy Science for Kids, Feb 2020. Web. 21 Feb 2020. < https://easyscienceforkids.com/holidays/ >.
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Tobin, Declan. (2020). Fun Holidays Facts for Kids. Easy Science for Kids. Retrieved from https://easyscienceforkids.com/holidays/
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